Growing criminal activities such as kidnapping, armed robbery and violent attacks among others, have been blamed on widespread human rights abuses in parts of Nigeria.
Nigeria’s Plateau State coordinator, National Human Rights Commission, Barr. Grace Pam, said understanding the rights of others in society is an inevitable end to violent crimes.
Speaking at a workshop on Human Rights, organized by a Nongovernmental organization, Search for Common Grounds (SFCG), for stakeholders in Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau, Mrs. Pam said human rights campaigns must be stepped up in communities to address the consequences associated with its abuse.
NHRC according to her has taken the lead in this campaign by training school children on Human Rights issues.
“To step up this campaign, we are now training school children on the importance of human right, aimed at catching them young so that they will grow up with the mentality formed in them as a culture”, she said
The workshop by Search for Common Grounds (SFCG), was also aimed at helping participants to understand the essence of respecting other people’s fundamental human rights, State Project Coordinator of the NGO, Patience Chaimang said.
Speaking to journalists at the end of the workshop, Chaimang said it was important to train stakeholders in early warning signs, conflict transformation which often are triggered by violation of human rights.
The choice of Jos North for the workshop according to her was to involve parties connected to the recent violent clashes in the locality.
“At the end of this training it is expected that participants will have full knowledge of conflict transformation and early warning signs; hoping that they will carry the message forward and use what they have learnt to secure their communities”, Chaimang said.
Responding, one of the participants, a Village Head in Jos-north, Mr. Arum Bulus, said the knowledge gained from SFCG has helped to reduce tension in the community.
Bulus said most of the places tagged “no go areas” as a result of the incessant crisis in Jos, can now be accessed by everyone.